The Miami Equestrian team had a heck of a weekend March 1st and 2nd, with all three teams traveling to horse shows. The RedHawks showed well in every arena, with the dressage team taking 3rd at Midway, the western team coming in 2nd for both of their horse shows, and the hunt seat team dominating both shows with first place both days. Whew! What a whirlwind.
Winter storm Titan was threatening each team during the weekend. Dressage team captain Lauren Lockhart explained ““Titan” was a concern for traveling back but it was raining and sleeting only for a few moments during our travel so we made it back safely!” Thank goodness. Western captain Dana Rossman was proud of the western team for braving the winter storm, showing with freezing temps and chattering teeth. Jessi Thorne of the hunt seat team indicated that “the weathermen predicted the storm of the year to hit Columbus early Saturday morning with up to 11 inches of snow. We weren’t sure if we would be able to get home Sunday night, but we ended up with barely any snow and a less than eventful bus ride home.” It sounds like Titan was a letdown, but the riding was definitely up to par.
The dressage team was showing at Midway College, with two teams of riders plus an extra ride on a ‘scramble’ team, made up of riders from multiple schools. Showing against fierce competitors from Otterbein, the University of Kentucky, Midway, and Wooster, Miami came in 3rd place by only 1 point. Emily Gillespie came in 2nd in the First Level with a high score of 71.03 (she lost first to Amelie Hordrum of UK with a 72.06%, the high point ride of the day). RedHawk Jeana Rae Schaeper took first in the Upper Training, and Kelsey Poleyeff took 2nd in the Lower Training. It was a competitive field this past Sunday- congratulations to the whole dressage team on a great show!
Over at Autumn Rose Farm, Ohio State’s equestrian complex, the western team put up a great team for their double header. Zach LeCompte competed for the first time this weekend in Walk Jog. Karen Faller pointed up into Advanced (& qualified for Regionals). Melissa Petrick also pointed up into Novice (& qualified for Regionals). Great job, western team!
For the hunt seat team, this was the final horse show of the regular show season. Coaches Heather and Lori took the team straight to the top, winning both days and solidifying Miami as the regional winner in the hunt seat this year, by a stunning 47 points. There were lots of blue ribbons both days; Rachel McConnell (novice over fences) Jackie Yeager (open over fences,) Rachel Flake, Taylor Myers, Sydney Lewis, Kaitlin Elliott all on the flat as well as Carita Haverlock, Madison Enderson, and Kylie Fleming. Awesome job RedHawks!
Otterbein hosts the final hunt seat show of the regular show season every year, and they traditionally honor all the graduating seniors. This year each senior was honored and was presented with a rose and good luck horseshoe keychain. Sadly, Otterbein lost a cherished member of their herd recently. Moose was a horse that all the students in the region had come to know and love, and Otterbein also held a special memorial in his honor this weekend. MUET sends our deepest condolences, and we know Moose is cantering over the Rainbow Bridge.
Of course, what’s a horse show without great snacks? At the western show, the delicious chocolate chip cookies provided by the LeCompte family; at the dressage show, the Farthings sent along cookies as well, and the hunt seat team was spoiled with “delicious meatballs & baked ham along with a bunch of baked goods that other team members & families also contributed”. “A huge thank you to the Kastings, Myers and Paulsons for the amazing food they’ve provided for the hunt seat team this season! We’ve been absolutely spoiled.” – Abby Postle (Treasurer)
Both the dressage team and the western team had alumni in attendance. “We stopped in Georgetown on our way down to have dinner with dressage alumni, Emily Steiner, at a hibachi grill. This was a really fun experience with the entertainment of having vegetables being thrown at us while we ate,” Lauren Lockhart shared. Alumni Mary Forster was at Autumn Rose, to ride in the Alumni Classes and help out with multiple things throughout the day. Mary locked in a 1st place- no surprise to those of us who remember Mary’s show career here at MUET!
Each team has their own good luck charms and rituals, but the fruit basket of the hunt seat team continues to grow. This weekend, lucky charms “Steve the orange” and “Jose the apple” joined forces with another lucky banana to send the team to victory. Rumor has it head coach Heather Pinnick could also be seen sporting a mustache around the ring. Meanwhile, at Autumn Rose, Beth pulled out her lucky earrings to send the western team to a solid 2nd place finish.
The dressage team didn’t have a lucky charm, but they did have some luck. “Emily Gillespie’s zipper on her tall boot broke so the whole team chipped in last minute to find her a pair to wear just minutes before she had to get on the horse,” Lauren told me. Phew! Nothing like a close call on your way in the ring. Perhaps it was those borrowed boots that sent Emily to her 2nd place finish in First Level. The final regional dressage show is our home show, coming up in March- the team is still in the lead to head to Nationals this year.
The weekend came to a less-than-dramatic close when winter storm Titan came in like a lamb; the teams all arrived home safely and we are looking forward to next weekend, with another western double header at OSU. Stay tuned!